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Another week, another reminder about a discount for Disrupt. I will be brief.
If you wish to attend Metaverse Marketing perturbe in San Francisco (and please contact us if you do) go to this link and type in the code STATION to benefit from a 15% reduction on passes, excluding online and exhibition tickets.
Let’s go to the Detroit auto show. Wow, it was small this year. Like really small. Matt Burns, veteran Metaverse Marketing journalist and editor, was on the ground and made an interesting observation, at least for startups. The lack of OEM presence was actually great news for startups, he reports.
Startups were relegated to the literal basement. Now they take center stage – or at least are stage adjacent. Of course, the lack of high-profile disclosures from traditional OEMs could mean less attention for everyone, including startups.
Oh, another notable person showed up at the show. President Joe Biden was there and announced the approval of the first $900 million in funding to build electric vehicle charging stations in 35 states as part of the $1 trillion infrastructure bill.
This week, our friends at Micromobility industries hosted another micromobility-focused event in San Francisco, and TC’s Haje Jan Kamps showed up to check out the goods.
Some highlights of the event:
Apollo introduced the Apollo Pro, a rugged $3,500 beast that claims to be the “Cybertruck of scooters.”
Based in Brooklyn Beyond launched its “Cargo One” e-scooter for delivery people.
Escape launched his electric roller skatesthat seem equal parts fun and equal parts terrifying.
Faction displayed sound latest driverless mini fleet vehicle.
hunter boards introduced its lightweight electric skateboard.
Tortoise has been to balance with its vending machine on wheels.
Launch of micromobility industries RideReview.io to create a one-stop-shop for micromobility vehicle reviews, feedback and testing.
Unagi had good and bad news to share. Let’s start with the bad. The much-hyped Unagi Eleven, which was built with incredibly smart features, is being phased out because it was simply too expensive to run as a subscription service.
However, Unagi launched its new Model One Voyager, which will be available in December, and appears to be an upgraded version of its original Model One scooter. The company is also expanding its subscription geographically.
Pinch revealed the Apollo Class II Electric Bike which is designed to seat two passengers and will launch in select markets in 2023.
Wau bike showed his electric bike with 100 miles of range.
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Offer of the week
When I think of Porsche and the 911, I no longer have just think of that sweet, iconic sports car. No.
Porsche’s highly anticipated (perhaps anxiety-provoking) IPO would offer 911 million shares. ;D
The IPO is expected to generate a market valuation of between €60 billion and €85 billion ($60 billion to $85 billion). This puts the VW Group in an interesting position, given that the entire company – which today includes Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini, Porsche, Skoda, Seat and Volkswagen passenger vehicles – has a market capitalization of approximately 87 billion euros (at the time of this writing). Prediction time: Porsche’s IPO won’t hit these highs (call me conservative).
As for the deal itself, it’s worth knowing Porsche’s background, the family behind it and its relationship to the VW Group. Reuters has a nice little story outlining the history and drama behind Porsche. To understand the past is to understand the issues.
Tl;dr: Porsche Automobil Holding SE, which was controlled by the Piëch family, attempted to take over Volkswagen, but instead gave up power and ended up merging with the company.
Want more offers? A whole list of them including information on Aptiv, TerraWatt and TruckSmarter were in the subscription version this week. Subscribe for free here.
Notable reads and other tidbits
It’s Argo revealed an ecosystem of products and services designed to support commercial delivery and robotaxi operations. Why am I worried? Because after years of demos and videos, companies are starting to show how they plan to make money.
Cruise said it would launch commercial robotaxi services in Austin, Texas and Phoenix — two hotspots for self-driving vehicle development in the next 90 days. Services will initially be small-scale, but from the outset, robotaxi services will be driverless. Company executives have repeatedly emphasized this 90-day deadline; it seems they want to show that they can scale quickly. We will see!
Final drivethe self-driving and electric truck maker, is expanding into Germany, representing its first new market in Europe outside of its native Sweden.
Philippe Koopmanautonomous vehicle safety consultant, breaks down an accident involving a Zoox autonomous test vehicle.
Tu probably saw the robot cover making its way into and through a crime scene. Here’s a little more about the story. The error of the robot, at least in this case, was caused by man. I think this story highlights the state of autonomous vehicle technology and the lessons that can be learned from it.
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